I´m so sorry it´s taken me soooo long to get this article down. I got so sick right at that time after seeing the movie and stayed immobile for ten days…then travelling,working and just…unable to write. This movie is bigger than my words and that´s how it is. I had an amazing moment with Celine Sciamma and I´m moved by how she´s been able to capture the feeling of a community of black people living in the suburbs of Paris, with such an understanding of how they feel and what they are confronted with. The beauty of the movie goes way beyond the colour of skin. GIRLHOOD took the price for best movie during the Stockholm Film Festival this year. The theme for the whole festival was HOPE. I was very honoured to have an interview with director Celine Sciamma over a cup of tea at Berns veranda during the festival. We spoke french. It was my first interview ever and it was so interesting to actually get to speak to the creator of all the personalities in the movie. Understanding first of all that it is a creation. MARIEME is the girl. A black girl. What happens to her? We se her playing soccer and being good at it. We see her being in love with a young boy, taking a detour on her way home just to see him. We see her shrugging away from her big brother who is the dominant male figure in the family and we see the friendship with her young sister, the two of them holding hands as they go to sleep. And we see them taking care of their little sister while their mum works non stop cleaning in a hotel. We see gang fights between girls, shoplifting, dancing, sweet friendships …and so much more. This is a movie where all leading roles are black and that gave me flashbacks to a time when I was deeply in love with a black musician and went on tour with him and the group he played with, during 10 intense summer days. I spent all my days, evenings and nights emerged in the blackness of skin colour and felt so totally black myself. The special quality of the people, their music and culture, the way they move, express emotions, laugh…It is a time I remember with much gratitude and this time spent with them made me realise even deeper the illusion of skin colour. And yet the skin colour has been and still is such a major reason in the differences of upbringing, culture, lifestyle and how people have been treated. So we spoke a bit about this, me and Celine and why she choose to make a movie grounded in the black culture. She said “it´s reflecting the french youth of today, their context of life and living in the suburbs of Paris. The sexism. “Mysogenie” The secret more hidden levels and the more official ones”. We spoke about the theme of the festival. HOPE. And I asked her what she sees as hopeful where apparently it is not showing so much hope. Celine said that “the hope is in the REFUSAL. Marieme refuses everything! She refuses the conditions that are set for her culturally, socially. That´s very COURAGEOUS! The HOPE is in the NO, in the courage to say no, in the courage to go her own way. It is a film where the women are strong and fight for their right to be free. The men are more like figures than personalities”. She believes in the movies as a media, believes in the pleasure of being a spectator taken on a journey and how to guide that journey towards insights. There is HOPE in inventing a form and beauty. We talk about how the movie ends and we as spectators are left with “INQUIETUDE”, worry. What will happen to Marieme? Celine says that “you worry about the people you love and that is the meaning. To feel the love. To care about someone”. We also know that she will be ok, because her strong decisions sofar have taken her to a place where she can only go forward. Celine grew up in the suburbs of Pontoise outside Paris and has good memories from there. it was not a difficult place to live in. Very socially and culturally mixed. A lot of emotions and aliveness. Her description made me want to go there. Next time I´m in Paris I will! We talked about feminism and I said that for me it is all inclusive and can not exclude men as it did so often in the 70s. And Celine said that she is a “Feministe of TODAY! That men should not have to be afraid either. It´s not about VENGEANCE, it´s a progress for EVERYONE”. There I´m with her. Women, men, mothers, fathers, daughters, sons, sisters, brothers, friends and lovers. Black and white. All the same rights.